BT has revealed that a minority of customers on its copper broadband service could temporarily lose Sky Sports 1 and 2 when BT Sport launches this summer.
A spokesperson for the company told us that those affected will be offered six months free broadband by way of compensation.
We understand that this will affect a small number of customers on slower connections and that BT Vision customers with a decent BT Broadband connection will be able to get both Sky Sports and BT Sport.
“Launching a new sports channel and extra live TV channels has meant we have had to make some changes to the way we deliver different programming. Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 will now be delivered over our Infinity fibre-based broadband. We’ve written to our Sky Sports customers who are in an Infinity-enabled area to explain this change.”
“For customers that are not in an Infinity area, we have been able to develop a new technology to stream Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 over copper broadband, which means most of these customers can continue to enjoy these channels from BT.”
BT has yet to share exactly how many customers are affected or what the minimum streaming speed required to get the Sky Sports channels is.
If you want to watch the forthcoming BT Sport channels on BT Vision you’ll need to have a BT Broadband connection. BT Sport will provide access to 38 live Premier League games in the 2013/4 season, with the other 116 games available on Sky Sports.
Right now, if you want to get BT Sport and Sky Sports through one BT TV service, you’ll need to get BT Vision.
While you’ll be able to get BT Sport through BT YouView, BT is still negotiating with Sky over getting Sky Sports 1 and 2 on its other digital TV platform as well.
BT hopes that the minority of customers affected will be brought back into the fold once BT Infinity becomes available in their area.
The spokesperson added: “Our fibre network has passed 15 million homes and premises and is rapidly growing, so we hope these customers will soon be able to qualify for Sky Sports 1 and Sky Sports 2 when their area is enabled.”
BT's non-fibre broadband products cost £10/month (10GB download cap) and £16/month (unlimited downloads) respectively, meaning affected customers stand to save either £60 or £96 if they can't stream Sky Sports.
Sky Sports 1 and 2 currently cost £15/month each or £20/month for both channels on BT Vision.